Cooking School

Cooking is like love; it should be entered into with abandon or not at all.

This summer, I’m taking some online cooking classes which I’m thoroughly enjoying.  Instead of just following recipes, I’m learning the why’s and how’s of different techniques.  I’m looking forward to expanding my limited repertoire and cooking delicious things without adding piles of cream cheese, canned soups, and cheddar cheese.  😉

One of my first attempts was sauteed chicken dressed with a wine sauce (using herbs and shallots). I used fresh parsley from our garden, and I served it with steamed sugar peas, also from our garden.  It was delicious!

DSC_5036 DSC_5037 DSC_5038When cooking for two, I tend to limit my number of dishes. I’ll often serve a protein with a vegetable, and that’s it.  Of course I’ll also throw in a starch at times, but I’m definitely not bound to it.

What do you constitute as a complete meal?

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9 Responses to Cooking School

  1. My French Heaven says:

    A complete meal in France is an appetizer, an entree, some cheese and dessert. It can all be quite light, like a light salad as an appetizer, your beautiful chicken as a main dish and fruit for dessert. The thing is to try to eat a little bit of everything: proteins, raw and cooked veggies, dairy and fruit… Wine is of course a must! Red wine especially is good for you. Two glasses per meal! You are off to a great start! I hope you enjoy the rest of your culinary journey. Keep using herbs from your garden. Nothing compares!!!

    • Thank you for your kind reply. I feel like I’m treading into a big world of cooking and have little clue what I’m doing. But from my limited exposure, I have to say that French food is very appealing. I’d like to get Julia Child’s cook books and start there. I’ll be checking out your blog for recipes and ideas too!

  2. coletrain77 says:

    Hi Ange! Good for you for trying something new! I’m so against the idea of cooking with cans of soup in everything! So unsophisticated and not good for you, etc.! I always avoid those types of recipes except for every once in awhile. Cooking with wine elevates foods immensely! I have a recipe for simple chicken with a wine sauce and Mike raves about it (and it’s easy!). Right now I’m in a cooking phase, too, and am enjoying the challenge. I particularly like to make over leftovers in interesting ways. Okay, enough about food. Happy cooking! Oh, and I usually have a protein, starch (of some sort), vegetable, and sometimes salad. Right now I’m super into crostini with interesting toppings (cheese, veggies, etc.). And it’s worth it to invest in a good, expensive bottle of balsamic vinegar…

    • I had to look up what a crostini was, but they look good! And I agree with your comment about balsamic vinegar. We received an expensive bottle from Dan and Est when they visited, and it makes all the difference in my cooking. Now I’m thinking that I’ll need an expensive bottle of olive oil for when I use it raw (in dressings and such). Do you notice any difference in the quality of different olive oils?

  3. Esther says:

    Hi Ange 🙂
    I like to leave out the starch too and just have a protein with vegetables. Sometimes it’s great and other times I can’t get out of my head that the meal NEEDS potatoes or something! (I can probably count on one hand how many times I’ve actually done potatoes in the last 6 months). I like to add fresh bread or buns if the meal needs a bit extra.

    Taking a cooking class sounds like lots of fun! I would love to do something like that, but unfortunately circumstances of life don’t exactly allow for tons of dinner prep time 🙂

    • I don’t eat potatoes that often either. But with regards to cooking school, the actual classes take quite some time, but it doesn’t necessarily mean that the meals take long to make. For myself, I enjoy the different recipes that I get, but more than that, I really appreciate the advice and how-to’s that I’ve come away with. As a little example, I didn’t know that you should pre-rinse long grained rice in order to rinse off the extra starch which makes the cooked rice sticky. It’s just little things like that which make me think it’s worth it. 🙂

  4. Lorraine says:

    Hi Ange,
    Your supper looks delicious but I can’t believe your husband would be satisfied with that. Gotta have a starch. Ron and I love lots of veggies but a potato (his choice) rice or noodles would need to accompany that. We often (since the kids have grown) nuke a potato and serve it with sour cream or butter and chives or nuke small potatoes until almost done, brush them with olive oil and crisp them up on the BBQ. (along with some peppers and carrots…..I love carrots on the BBQ…all brushed with some OO and sprinkled with Herbamare spice/salt.) When the kids were little and with so many food allergies suppers were usually just plain boiled or mashed potatoes, meat and veggies and always gravy. Now we rarely have gravy unless I have a roast. Have fun cooking!

    • Thanks! And I must admit that this was a light meal. Other times we definitely have more. But summer especially seems to call for less starches and more veggies. I’ve never tried carrots on the BBQ. They sound good! Do you pre-cook them and once they’re on the grill, do you put them directly on the grates or do you put them in a foil pan?

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